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Office of National Ombudsman


We help small businesses when they experience excessive or unfair federal regulatory enforcement actions.

Congress established the Office of the National Ombudsman in 1996 to assist small businesses, small government entities, and small nonprofits when they are subject to excessive enforcement by a federal agency. Excessive enforcement may include repetitive audits or investigations, excessive fines, penalties, threats, retaliation or other unfair enforcement action.

As an impartial liaison, we refer comments submitted by a small business to the appropriate agency for high-level fairness review, and we work across the federal government to address those concerns to help small businesses succeed.

On an annual basis, we rate federal agencies using feedback received from the agency questionnaire and criteria such as timeliness and quality of responses.

If a small business requests Ombudsman assistance about SBA regulatory enforcement actions, the agency will not retaliate. The SBA will investigate all allegations of retaliation or threats and will refer all allegations to the Inspector General and/or appropriate Management Board Member. Any retaliatory action taken by an SBA employee against a small business will be dealt with according to SBA policy.

Contact the National Ombudsman and Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Enforcement Fairness, Office of the National Ombudsman, U.S. Small Business Administration if you feel that you or your firm has been unfairly treated.

The contact information for the Office of the National Ombudsman, U.S. Small Business Administration are as follows.

         Office of the National Ombudsman
         U.S. Small Business Administration
         409 3rd Street, S.W.
         Washington, DC 20416


Web address:

Click here to view the SBREFA memo